new year, new skin: tips from clarins

perhaps, because i test new skincare products almost daily, i’m overly jaded…but is anyone else completely confused and overwhelmed by the skincare options available today?  honestly, i go to the websites of my favorite companies, and i hardly know where to start – by the time i’ve finished looking, it seems like i need $500 worth of products, and i’ll be spending 30 minutes prepping my skin twice a day, applying potion after potion.  i’m exhausted just thinking about it!

as i’ve mentioned before, clarins is one of my absolute favorite skincare lines.  they’re one of the few companies i can completely trust with new products, and when my skin is tortured by some other product i’ve tested, clarins never fails to soothe the beast.  so, in honor of a new year and a fresh start, i thought i’d check with their chief skincare guru, kara peterson, to weed through the mess and give us her top tips for keeping your skin gorgeous in 2009.  

shoppingsmycardio:  can you help us navigate this crazy world of skincare?  sometimes it gets so overwhelming – how can we know which products are providing which results, and whether we should be using brightening products, anti-aging, moisturizing…the list is endless!

kara:  you know, everyone’s skin is so different – i really recommend sitting down with someone who can look at your skin and guide you.  go somewhere that you can get really helpful info, where someone will really sit down, talk to you and analyze your skin.  that might be your aesthetician, or the department store counter for your favorite skincare brand.  there are so many products, but everyone has specific needs – it will really make a difference if you get some personalized advice.

but in general, remember that a facial serum penetrates down deeper to provide concentrated results, a moisturizer helps to hydrate but also to protect your skin’s top layer.  using a serum first also helps to pull moisturizer deeper into your skin, for better results.  

SMC:  what are some of the biggest mistakes women make with their skin?

kara:  i think the biggest thing is to remember, whether you wore makeup that day or not, you really need to cleanse your skin every single night.  when i’m too exhausted, i use our comfort cleansing water – just soak a makeup pad with it and wipe your face.  it does a great job of cleansing your skin, and is so easy!  (editor’s note:  i keep a bottle of this by my bed…when i just can’t face the nighttime routine, i do exactly as she says…works like a charm!)

SMC:  we’re all trying to cut our budgets these days, and for a lot of us, i’m guessing spa facials are going to be off the table for a while.  what treatments can we do at home, and what should we leave to the pros?

kara:  exfoliation will really help your skin’s cell renewal and keeps your skin clean and revived, so make sure you’re exfoliating 2-3 times a week.  blackheads and milia will eventually go away on their own, so never try to do extractions at home – you’ll damage your skin, and potentially leave permanent marks.  lotus oil is great for treating blackheads, it penetrate pores and cleans out debris.  even using biore strips is still a better option than trying to do an extraction yourself.  

one great trick to use at home:  apply a facial oil before you apply a mask:  the oil will pull the mask further into your skin, and really improve its benefits!

SMC:  what are some simple things we can do in this new year to improve the condition of our skin?

kara:  wear sunscreen!  i know everyone says this, but it’s so important.  also, make sure you have the proper cleanser – keeping your skin clean is the best way to keep it healthy.  and when you’re applying any facial product, be careful that you’re not pulling and tugging on your skin as you apply – be gentle. (editor’s note:  clarins uv plus 40 is the best facial sunscreen i’ve tried.  it’s mineral-based, so no nasty breakouts.  just apply a little on top of your normal moisturizer, and it lasts all day!)

SMC:  if we overdo a treatment and get into trouble, what would you suggest to repair our skin?

kara:  go back to the basics.  look for the most simple, natural products you can find – let go of your anti-aging products, brightening products, anything like that, and give your skin 2-3 weeks of a very gentle cleanser and moisturizer.  (editor’s note:  i always go back to clarins’ sensitive skin line when my skin is upset – it’s amazing stuff!)

a huge thank you to kara and the clarins gurus for helping out with this amazing advice – from my experience, i can tell you that kara’s advice about asking for personalized help is a great tip.  don’t feel obligated to buy everything the expert suggests…you can pick up one product at a time, or find similar products in other lines. but having someone with expertise look at your skin and tell you what you need can be invaluable, and you’ll end up saving money on all of the products you’re buying that are wrong for your skin!

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One thought on “new year, new skin: tips from clarins

  1. jessie

    I have been using a serum under my moisturize, it has made a world of difference in keeping winter skin looking great!

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